Known for its iconic brands, such as Hot Wheels, Fisher Price, and Barbie, Mattel is one of the world’s biggest toy manufacturers. For many children, their dolls have come to represent real role models. But what do those role models mean for the children who look up to them, and how can toy companies help to inspire young women?
Who Is Kavi Sharma?
Kavi – a 12-year-old Indian-American girl who aspires to become an EDM performer – is a character developed in collaboration with author Varsha Bajaj. The doll represents the growing popularity of EDM in mainstream culture and shows a real push from the brand to be more inclusive of different interests and hobbies.
Bajaj says, “Kavi’s story is important to all the young readers who will see parts of their lives represented.” She went on to say that she took “immense delight” in showcasing many aspects of Indian culture and traditions, such as Indian food, clothing, and the festival of Diwali.
Like all American Girl dolls, Kavi comes with various exciting accessories designed to match her character/interests. In this case, the doll comes with a mini DJ booth complete with a laptop, mic, keyboard, synths, and drum pad, allowing children to learn about the process of creating EDM music while they play.
All in all, the complete set will cost $115.
The Importance of Representation
The release of the Kavi Sharma doll is a significant step forward in promoting inclusivity and representation in the toys that children play with. Children’s dolls are often seen as role models. Having dolls that reflect a variety of races, cultures, and interests can help children see themselves represented while also helping to broaden their perspectives. Additionally, it can help to combat stereotypes and inspire greater understanding and acceptance of different people and cultures.
The doll also helps to promote the image of women within the EDM industry, which has long been seen as a male-dominated space. By representing a young girl passionate about the genre, Mattel is sending a powerful message and breaking down decades of stereotypes.
This kind of representation is crucial to encouraging more young girls to pursue a career in music production and removing the barriers that have traditionally kept women from entering the field. Furthermore, promoting diversity in the EDM industry is essential for the growth and evolution of the genre itself. A diverse range of musicians brings a variety of perspectives, ideas, and influences to the table, which can lead to more creative and innovative music.